April 13, 2014 |
Whether they're looking at newly built or previously owned houses, all buyers have lengthy wish-lists. When choosing new, they have a virtually empty canvas on which to draw their dream homes, especially if money is no object. These days, however, it is an issue, even for higher-end buyers, said Carl Becht, vice president of sales for Vaughan & Sautter Builders in Wayne. "They are very cost-conscious these days and might not be as willing to go overboard" as they were before the economic downturn, Becht said.
February 2, 2014 |
City Hall has a reputation as a prodigious producer of hot air. But the towering seat of government at Broad and Market Streets is not Philadelphia's biggest greenhouse-gas emitter. The Philadelphia Museum of Art and Perelman Building ranked as city government's top energy consumer, according to a new list compiled by the Mayor's Office of Sustainability. City Hall ranked No. 6. Twenty buildings in three sectors - offices and courts, prisons, and museums - consumed more than 60 percent of the energy used by 259 city buildings analyzed in the report.
January 26, 2014 |
Once Marcelo J. Rouco decided on Philadelphia as the location for the North American headquarters of his Australian energy-efficiency firm, Ecosave Inc., he went all in. Last June, he paid $4.2 million for a small engineering firm in Bristol, DVL Automation, as a beachhead for his North American expansion. He also bought a Center City house and relocated his wife and two children from Down Under. "Australia is a great place, but a smaller market, only 21 million people," said Rouco, 44. "So I expect the North American office to generate a lot more revenue than the Australian office.
January 7, 2014 |
Want to "green" your portfolio? You can invest in mutual funds that keep an eye on the environment by owning shares in companies that, say, treat wastewater used in the "fracking" of natural gas, one of Pennsylvania's booming industries. Pax World is just one of several mutual fund outfits that offers what's known as a "fossil fuel-free" mutual fund, one that includes investments in energy efficiency, alternative energies like solar and so-called low-carbon technologies. Joe Keefe, president and CEO of Pax World Management, based in Portsmouth, N.H., recommends "a multipronged approach.
January 2, 2014 |
When Jim McLaughlin first learned about federal efficiency standards for lightbulbs - and that incandescents would change or go away - he had but one thought: Stockpile! Two years ago, the Broomall resident bought cases of bulbs. Wednesday, as the final phase of standards kicks in, his inventory has lessened. But at age 71, he figures - and hopes - his bulbs will outlast him. "We have none of the new-generation bulbs in our house, and I plan to keep it that way," he said, adding not quite facetiously, "I'm a grumpy old man. I don't want anyone telling me what to do. " In nearby Wallingford, energy efficiency aficionado David Director is ecstatic about the new bulbs.
October 17, 2013 |
More than two years after acquiring a nearly half-acre site at 16th and Moore Streets, LPMG Cos. aims to set a standard for green construction in South Philadelphia with reNewbold, a project that will include 16 rowhouses, two condominiums, and one retail space. Groundbreaking is scheduled for Wednesday afternoon on the project, for which LPMG will seek LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Platinum certification. The superinsulated homes will have triple-pane windows, low-flow faucets and showerheads, a rainwater-collection system, and green roofs among other sustainable features.
July 28, 2013 |
The owners of 2,041 commercial buildings in Philadelphia have an initial Oct. 31 deadline to report energy and water usage at those facilities for disclosure online, city officials said Friday. The city's Building Energy Benchmarking Law, a 2012 law designed to make big buildings more efficient by forcing owners to think about how much energy their buildings use, mandated the reporting for sites with more than 50,000 square feet of indoor commercial space. "In order to make Philadelphia the greenest city in America and improve the city's energy efficiency and cost savings, we need to make a concerted effort across the city to reduce energy use in buildings," Mayor Nutter said in a news release.
July 7, 2013 |
The Energy Efficient Buildings Hub, an ambitious Pennsylvania State University research venture that was hailed as a cornerstone of the Navy Yard redevelopment when it was founded in 2010, is in danger of getting its plug pulled. The U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee has recommended Congress cut the hub's $22 million budget for the forthcoming fiscal year and order the Department of Energy to terminate the three-year-old program. The hub, which employs about 30 people, is funded almost entirely with federal money.
May 2, 2013 |
How many conservatives does it take to screw in a new lightbulb? More than if it were liberals. A new study out of the University of Pennsylvania finds that people who are more politically conservative are less in favor of investing in energy-efficiency technology. It turns out that they're likely to be put off by the environmental messaging. Which is ubiquitous. Energy efficiency has long been touted as a way to stall climate change. The federal government's Energy Star website promotes energy-efficient products by saying they will "save energy and fight climate change.
April 25, 2013 |
New Jersey is lagging in its efforts to promote clean energy and energy efficiency programs because of repeated raids on funding for the projects, according to environmentalists and industry advocates. Those concerns were underscored again Tuesday when the state Board of Public Utilities disclosed that it learned late last week that the Christie administration was planning to divert an additional $10 million in clean-energy funds to plug a gap in next year's state budget. That brings to more than $160 million the amount that may be appropriated from the program in the next fiscal year alone.